Just sayin’, ALEKS

Posted on October 8, 2013


Gee.   Is it just coincidence that students are saying, “I get the little pieces, but then it gets all scrambled when I put it togehter?”   ALEKS has students do one kind of problem, again and again, until they “get it.”   Now, they don’t have to *understand* it at all.   When they talk to me about their reasoning, it runs something like this:  “Well, on the other problem like that, I subtracted and then divided.”   Well, the other problem was a percent increase problem, and this is a straight-out- percent problem… but… reading the problem for meaning is *not* what is reinforced.

The students also actively Pursue the One Procedure.   This isn’t much of a surprise; ALEKS teaches procedure.  Please, people, don’t confuse that with teaching math.  Just sayin’.

Looking forward to Thursday, when Dorothea Steinke comes by to talk to us about the “four concepts the textbooks don’t teach.”    Oh, and my inner Hermione is all kinds of happy ’cause I found a mistake in the JAVA textbook.   And I’m getting a little faster, just not fast enough yet, at little animations.   Goal for tonight:   animated GIFs for adding integers with one example of all four possibilities.